In an announcement planned for tomorrow by Labour Leader, Jeremy Corbyn, around 1 million carers would receive an extra £10 a week under plans for a significant rise in the value of a carer’s allowance.
The increase would be funded by Labour and cost £538m by the time of the next election, by reversing the inheritance tax cut announced by George Osbourne, the then chancellor, in 2015.
This policy announcement is the latest in a series of policy announcements unveiled by the party ahead of next month’s local elections. In the announcement, Mr Corbyn will cite figures from Carers UK saying that unpaid carers save taxpayers £132bn a year.
Speaking at a carers’ centre in Birmingham, he will say: “Britain’s social care crisis was made in Downing Street by cutting £4.6bn from council care budgets. Millions of unpaid carers have been forced to fill the gap and put under even greater pressure as a result.
“We believe these unsung, unpaid heroes not only deserve our praise and recognition – they deserve better financial support. That’s why Labour is convinced it’s both morally and economically right to give the carer’s allowance a boost of £10 a week.”
Labour’s promise is to increase the allowance to the same level as jobseeker’s allowance, currently £73.10. The current carer’s allowance is worth £62.70 a week and is paid to people spending at least 35 hours a week caring for someone, who is usually a disabled or elderly relative.
Mr Corbyn will say this is the first step Labour would take towards transforming social care for the 21st century.